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Monk immolates self in Tibet's Ngaba region:report

March 1, 2009

Phayul[Friday, February 27, 2009 19:57]

Dharamsala, Feb. 27 – A Tibetan monk of Kirti monastery in Ngaba county
set himself ablaze today, Voice of Tibet radio service reported, citing
a source with contacts in the region.

Tsering, a monk of Kirti Jheypa monastery in Dharamsala, told VOT that
Tabey (spelled as pronounced), aged between 25 and 30, of Kirti Trunkhor
monastery in Ngaba county immolated himself around 1.40PM (Beijing Time).

“I was told the monk had gasoline spilled onto his body, and as soon as
he reached the main road of the town he set himself on fire. Bystanders
said he held high a picture of His Holiness the Dalai Lama and chanted
something but couldn’t be heard,” Tsering said, adding that he might be
calling for the return to Tibet of His Holiness the Dalai Lama and
independence for Tibet.

According to Tsering, bystanders saw him collapse on the ground after
they heard three gunshots. The monk was reportedly taken in a vehicle to
a nearby hospital, said Tsering, but it is not known if he is alive or
dead at the time of this report going online.

According to Tsering, locals link today’s incident of self-immolation to
the Chinese government’s restrictions on holding the annual great prayer
festival (Monlam Chenmo). Around a thousand monks had reportedly
gathered at Kirti monastery earlier in the day demanding that they be
allowed to hold the great prayer festival.

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